I'm not really a computer guy, but you really are an idiot.

"Let me see the bottom of your mouse," she said, picking up the mouse on my desk and flipping it over.

"Uh, OK."

"No, that's not it," she said, putting it back down. "Somebody keeps stealing mine and replacing it with a broken one. I'm so pissed off about it."

"What's wrong with it?" I asked, sympathetic because people were always stealing shit from my desk, too.

"I move it around, and it doesn't go where I want it to. Like, it sticks."

"Oh, that's easy to fix," I said, flipping the mouse over and popping out the ball inside. "You see these strips of gunk built up on these bars?"


"Well, you just scrape that crap off with a paperclip or your fingernail," I told her, and scraped the crap off with my fingernail. I put the ball back in and moved the arrow around my screen.

"Oh," she said. She paused for a second, and then said, "Well, I'm just gonna call the tech help desk to see if they'll give me a new one."


Flo: professional gangsta rapper.

There was a retarded kid at my high school who everybody called Flo. I always assumed he got the name because of his imaginary rhyming skills, but I later found out that it was actually short for Florence, which was his real name. Flo would walk around the cafeteria, taking peoples' trays up to the conveyor belt when they were done eating. Every so often, though, for absolutely no reason, he would decide not to take a person's tray up, and ask, "What am I? Your nigger?" A friend of mine hypothesized that the whole tray-taking routine was nothing more than a ruse that would give him an excuse to say that once in a while.

The true awesomeness of Flo wasn't the fact that he'd usually save you a trip across the cafeteria to drop your tray off. No, the true awesomeness of Flo was that he would "rap." If you gave Flo a few coins, he would generate several lines of gangsta-rap cliches that almost never rhymed.

"I was walking down this street. I had my hoes at my side. And then I saw this nigger. So I capped him in the ass. Damn! Payback's a bitch!"

I always wondered if Flo actually thought he could rap. People were enthusiastic about his raps, and encouraged him by giving him their pocket change, but his raps always ended with the table of people listening to him laughing enthusiastically, and Flo walking away with their empty lunch trays. I didn't know whether or not I should feel sorry for him, but I gave him a fair share of nickels and dimes for his trouble. It was undeniably entertaining as hell.

"I got a fat sack of weed. I got cash money and a gun. Don't mess with me on the street. I'll pull out my gat!"

The last time I saw Flo was on the last day of eleventh grade. Instead of making us go to class and showing us movies, which was the usual last day of class routine, they let all the students go outside. I sat with Flo and a group of friends on the bleachers on the far side of the football field, away from the meddling eyes of authority figures. One of the substitute teachers, only a few years older than the graduating class, was walking around the track that circled the football field with two female students. Every time they'd walk by, we'd all make semi-loud, but vague, comments about how he was going to get laid. On the fourth or fifth time around the track, Flo decided he would join in on the fun. Unfortunately, the art of subtlety escaped poor Flo, but he did his best.

"Hey!" he screamed at the top of his lungs, "You fucking faggot! You're going to fuck them in the fucking ass!"

We all started laughing uncontrollably. The substitute teacher turned around momentarily, puffing out his chest like he was going to beat up a retarded kid, which made us laugh even harder. They walked away, and a few minutes later a different teacher came and told us we weren't allowed to sit on those bleachers since there was nobody there to supervise us.


Worthless, thieving scumbags.

Every single time I stock my desk at work with office supplies, somebody comes along and takes everything. It usually stays there for a couple days, I use a little of it, and then one day I come in and and it's absolutely all gone.

My desk is in the corner, semi-secluded. Unless it's the day shift person taking my shit and sticking it in their half of the desk, which they lock, or the day shift person at the desk next to mine doing the same thing, somebody has to make a trip to take my stuff. Wherever they're coming from, it's pretty unlikely that they're saving themselves much time at all by stealing all my stuff, because if they're walking across the department, they may as well go to where the supplies are kept.

I can't even put into words how much this pisses me off. Somebody with absolutely no consideration for other people is wasting my time to save a negligible amount of their own. I don't want to have to lock my fucking desk. I shouldn't have to.

The saddest part of this is that I know whoever this person is does this to everybody, wherever they go, all the time. Fucking scumbag!

Today, when I found all my stuff gone again, instead of restocking the desk in the traditional manner, I wrapped my stuff in plastic and hid it in the dust-bunny infested space between the desk and the wall. Now my desk will be a mystery to the thief; when they come to steal my stuff, they'll wonder how I do any work with no supplies, and then they'll have to go elsewhere.


The funny looking rock.

When I was really little, I was visiting my grandpa and playing in his backyard. I liked to lift up rocks and collect the bugs crawling around underneath them. I also kept an eye out for interesting looking rocks to take home and stick in an empty cookie tin that was my "rock collection." In truth, it was mostly gravel, but I had a couple of neat looking ones. On this particular day, amidst the spiders and beetles, I found a completely awesome looking rock. It was unlike any other rock I had ever seen, but it was hard, dry, and stiff, so it was definitely a rock. I picked it up, excited about the new acquisition for my collection.

I brought it inside and showed my mom and my grandpa, who immediately made me throw it away and thoroughly wash my hands. I was still convinced that it was a rock, but they told me it was actually a dried up old dog turd.


Morgan loves my girlfriend, hates me.

I first became aware of Morgan during my senior year in high school. For half an hour a day, I sat in my homeroom class being bombarded by the mandatory youth advertising program called Channel One, and that's where I first encountered him. Morgan was a couple years younger than I was, so my homeroom couldn't have been his officially, but since he was good buddies with the teacher, he was in there every single day. Since it was an art room, Morgan would try to impress me with his low-quality artwork, expensive possessions, and various lies. I always found him to be obnoxious, but I was too nice to do anything other than listen to his incessant stream of bullshit.

"Check out my portfolio," he said one day, holding up a large, flat, leather case for carrying his artwork around. "It was almost two hundred dollars!"

"Nice," I said, not wanting to point out that owning an expensive case doesn't make one a decent artist.

Another time, he tried to feed me a completely absurd line of bullshit about how he was paid thousands of dollars, flown to California, and given a contract to "design surfboards" for many more thousands of dollars. I nodded, said "Wow," and pretended to believe him. I didn't see any real reason to shoot the poor guy down.

I tolerated Morgan's attempts at friendship for a few months. I never initiated conversation with him, but would humor him when he talked to me. He was a sycophant, and would act like everything I said or did was completely awesome, the only exception being the time he saw a 666 written in marker on the inside of my sweatshirt, and remarked, "That stuff is retarded." Morgan's attitude towards me changed abruptly when he found out I was involved with a girl who I later found out had rejected him.

"Hey, you know who likes you?" he said one day, laughing, "Sara Wiscowicz."

"I like her, too," I said.

Morgan's smile instantly faded and was replaced by a frown. He looked away from me and back down at his art project that he was working on.

"No comment," he uttered, as if I had asked him for a statement on the matter. He didn't talk to me for the rest of the homeroom period.

The very next day, a guy in my math class told me that Morgan, who rode his bus, had been talking about me on the way to school.

"He was going on and on about how much he hates your web page, saying you're retarded and stuff," the guy told me. Back then, I had a page that was virtually identical to this one, but with more boring day-to-day bits that nobody who didn't know me would be interested in, and more talk about smashing capitalism by means of excessive condiment procurement. It was a personal blog, though nobody called them that back then.

During homeroom, Morgan launched into a poorly-thought out tirade against me.

"Hey, I looked at your web page," he said.

"Oh yeah?"

"Yeah," he said, "It's retarded! It doesn't make any sense!"

"Why not?" I asked.

"You say there's capitalism in America! There's no capitalism in America! You should go to Europe! They're fighting wars over there over capitalism!"

Sitting at my table were three European foreign exchange students, whose mouths literally dropped open when Morgan said this.

"Are you serious?" I asked, shocked that somebody could have made it to tenth grade and still be dumb enough to say something like that. He was very serious, though, and for the next five minutes, he kept repeating the same points over and over: your web page is retarded; your web page makes no sense; and there is no capitalism in America, but they are fighting wars about it in Europe. I made some feeble attempts at correcting him, but he was getting so worked up that the teacher told him to calm down and just get the fuck away from me.

For the rest of the year, until I graduated, my friends and I were locked in a ridiculous cycle with Morgan. First, he'd make fun of or threaten one of us with his "fists of steel," then we'd make fun of him, then he'd tell on us and we'd be called to the office, where they told us not to bother him. And then he'd immediately start the cycle over again.

I don't know what ever happened to the guy, but I still have a promotional magnet with a picture of his mom on my refrigerator. I just think it's funny.


That guy took a drink out of the trash!

There was a period where I would always get free drinks by pulling a used cup out of the trash and getting a free refill. The trick also worked for buckets of popcorn pulled out of the trash at the movie theatre, which made for great free times after sneaking in without paying in the first place. Humans are equipped with this wonderful thing called an immune system, which protects them from nasty communicable illnesses, and I never got sick doing this. I no longer advocate such behavior, though, or even partake myself, out of fear of finally catching something from the practice. If I knew what my odds were, I'd probably still be doing it, but ignorance can be terrifying. In truth, it's probably almost as safe as eating in any restaurant. You don't know where the people making your food have been any more than you know where the person who threw away their cup has been.

Once, I was waiting in line at Taco Bell when I decided to show my friend how it was done. I went to the trash, pulled out a cup, got a refill, and got back in line.

"See that? Free drink!" I said.

"That lady is telling on you," he said, and pointed behind me. A woman was sitting with her teenage daughter, pointing me out to an employee with a broom and looking completely disgusted and offended. The employee looked at me, and then started walking in my direction. I wondered what she was going to say.

"Excuse me," she said. I moved out of the way, and she walked passed me. Apparently, there was no policy against doing that. When I ordered my food, I placed the cup conspicuously in front of me on the counter, but they didn't have anything to say about it, either.

When we left, we stuck it to The Man by taking all of the Fire Sauce.


Solidarity, love, and unity.

Last night, when I was getting home from work, I noticed a group of people holding signs on sticks standing on the corner across the street from my place. It was nearly 1:00 in the morning, so I thought, Wow, it's pretty fucking late for a protest. I live directly across the street from a college, and though I haven't seen any protests at this particular college, I've seen enough of them at the bigger college one town over that it's not at all a new sight to me. I've taken part in completely useless protests before, and I like to imagine protesters are someow sticking it to The Man, whether they're rallying against something that sounds reasonable or something that sounds completely ridiculous. I didn't know what this protest was about, because I was only able to read one of their signs, and it read "NO PAY CUTS."

I went online and told Lew about it, and he said, "Maybe they're on strike." I guess I'm so used to seeing protests that the idea of a group of people with signs actually sticking it to The Man in a real way completely slipped my mind. A quick Google searched proved him correct.

I tend to support strikers pretty universally, even if I don't know exactly why they're striking. I figure that most people are getting fucked over by The Man, and I can really appreciate it when they're willing to take a stand. At my last job, I casually mentioned how a strike would totally shut the whole place down. The old ladies I worked with told the boss, who called a meeting to say we weren't allowed to talk about stuff like that.

It started to rain around 3:00 in the morning. The strikers left, and though I fully stood behind their cause, I was worried. As awesome as a strike is, I hoped The Man would cave in to their demands immediately, and that they wouldn't be back.

When I was woken up to the sound of car horns, I immediately knew why, but I got out of bed to check, anyway. Sure enough, the strikers were back. When I'm driving and I see people on strike, I do the solidarity honk, too, so I can understand. I went back to bed, and I ignored most of the honking, but I got up when I thought there might have been a car crash right in front of my house. A car horn had been going off insessantly for a solid 30 seconds, and there were sirens in the background. I got out of bed, walked to the front room, and peered out the window. I couldn't even tell who was blaring their horn, because the scene looked entirely normal, except for the noise: a bunch of cars were waiting at the light, and a guy with a sign was walking casually on the sidewalk.

It was at that point that solidarity started to piss me off.

Like the people with 15 yellow-ribbon and American flag magnets on their car to prove they support the troops more than you, some people seem to think supporting people on strike is contest. It's not. Blaring your horn for extended periods of time doesn't mean you're better than everybody else who thinks these folks should get what they want, it just means you're a douchebag.

I've been hearing this since I woke up. I really don't mind that people have been tooting their horns all day long. My girlfriend and I went out earlier, we honked, too. But there's just no fucking excuse for laying on the horn as if there was a small child in the road.

I'm tempted to active the Samuel L. Jackson Home Security System, but I won't. It's not their fault some people are just complete idiots. I just hope they get this shit settled soon.